By Tulsa Athletic
Tulsa Athletic captured their second consecutive Heartland Conference Championship with a 2-1 victory at Demize NPSL in the Heartland Conference Finals on Saturday, July 17 night at Lake Country Soccer Complex.
With the win, Tulsa will play host to the South Regional Semifinals and Finals next weekend on Friday, July 23 and Sunday, July 25. As the No. 1 seed in the regional, Tulsa Athletic receives a bye into the finals on Sunday and will play the winner of the 2 and 3 seed matchup on Friday. Both games will take place in Tulsa.
The green and yellow pulled out to a 2-0 advantage midway through the contest before a late goal by Demize made it 2-1. Tulsa tallied goals in the 24th and 64th minutes to gain the 2-0 edge.
Juan Arias put Tulsa Athletic up 1-0 in the 24th minute of action. Joe Garcia played a perfect ball over the top to Aboubakr Diallo, and Diallo played a ball across the box to Arias who took one touch to get around the goalkeeper and scored for the 1-0 margin.
Diallo helped create the second goal, his second assist of the game, to increase the edge to 2-0 midway through the second half. Diallo played a ball across to Dante Brigida, and Brigida tallied the goal for a 2-0 score in the 64th minute.
Demize got a goal in the 87th minute for the 2-1 final score. Demize’s Rian Marques scored the goal for the home side.
Tulsa won the Heartland Conference championship in 2019 when they defeated the same Demize team, 2-0, at Veterans Park in Tulsa. It also marks the second consecutive season Tulsa Athletic has advanced to the South Region Finals and the third time in club history. Tulsa hosts the South Region Finals for the first time after traveling to Miami and Chattanooga in their previous appearances.
Tulsa Athletic are back in action in the South Region Final on Sunday, July 25 in Tulsa. Location and time are to be determined.